eGov

Using data to improve social welfare schemes

Before taking over the reins of DeitY in February, Aruna Sharma was heading the department of panchayat and rural development in Madhya Pradesh. As secretary of DeitY, she is steering UIDAI and overseeing the execution of Digital India programme. In an interaction with Governance Now, she talks about the database-driven social welfare regime and uses of Aadhaar.   

Mobile number portability request reaches up to 20.47 crore

Up to 51 lakh requests for mobile number portability (MNP) were received by the telecom operators in February 2016, bringing the total number of requests up to 20.47 crore, according to a report by telecom regulatory authority of India (TRAI). In January, total requests for MNP were 19.96 crore.   The rise in porting requests can be viewed in the background of

Will Facebook, Twitter relocate servers to India?

The debate to relocate offshore servers of internet and social media firms including Google, Facebook and Twitter has revived. Home minister Rajnath Singh has requested the social media companies, located outside India, to maintain servers in the country, in order to expedite the process of getting information on accounts which spread mischievous messages posing a threat to law and order situat

Government services now just a click away!

Availing services from any government office is never an easy task. To avail just one service, a citizen has to wait in long queues, make multiple visits, file thick-layered forms and face the sluggish attitude of public servants. Besides, arranging attested copies of documents, affidavits and bribing officials to speed up the delivery process often leaves one helpless and angry. &nbs

This is how India can increase its municipal revenue

The inaccuracy of data related to land ownership causes huge losses to the private and public sector. Moreover, land ownership disputes account for majority of cases pending in the courts globally. In an interaction with Pratap Vikram Singh, David Hickman of Thomson Reuters talks about Aumentum, a GIS-based solution for land revenue management. Edited excerpts: H

TRAI sticks to auctioning all spectrum in 700-MHz band

Telecom regulatory authority of India (TRAI) has recommended that entire spectrum in the 700-MHz band should be put to auction. Keeping in mind the growing consumer base for internet and the government’s ambitious Bharat Net programme (aims to provide broadband connectivity to all panchayats in the country) the regulatory body has recommended putting entire 700-MHz band on auction, despit

Private investment can provide a solution to infrastructure deficit

With its urban population expected to reach 600 million by 2031, India is on the brink of an urban revolution, according to a United Nations (UN)-backed report. In such a scenario the country needs to increase its investment in infrastructure to ensure structured urban expansion. Here, geospatial technologies can play a major role in transforming the country. Bentley Systems CEO Greg Bentle

E-Voting: Ballot booth on your desktop

In 2004, a major technological push in the Indian electoral history took place when 1.5-million electronic voting machines (EVMs) replaced ballot boxes and papers for vote casting. The journey however wasn’t easy. “It took the election commission of India (ECI) more than 20 years to develop and introduce EVMs in the country after fulfilling all legal requirements and convinc

‘Good governance’, but through subterfuge!

The government has tabled the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill, 2016, in the Lok Sabha. It seeks to give a legal basis for issuing Aadhaar, that is, the unique identity number for every person residing in India for at least half the number of days of a 12-month period immediately preceding the date on which he/she seeks enrolment under Aad

The new digital blueprint for social change

There’s something big afoot in the Bitcoin world. It’s important enough for the smooth and ruthless sharks of Wall Street to take notice and turn uneasy. Bitcoins have always been treated by the established monetary and financial world with healthy suspicion. Some of it was initially justified, especially when Bitcoin exchange Mount Gox wound up citing missing bitcoins that were &ls

Hard to broad ban!

The Haryana government on February 19 suspended mobile internet services in the districts affected by the agitation caused by the Jat community over reservation. The ban was imposed under section 144 of criminal procedure code (CrPC) to control the situation from being fanned by rumours or inflammatory messages.Similar ban was imposed in Gujarat last year during violent protests stirred by Hard

The market churner

 Don’t hang us before a proper trial and give us an opportunity to be heard,” says Ashok Chaddha, president of Ringing Bells Private Limited, the company which is offering a smartphone for just Rs 251. Ringing Bells indeed created a huge flutter in the world of smartphones with these dirt cheap rates. For days together, the firm is in the eye of storm and its offer has been ter

Link engineering skills with manufacturing industry: Chairman, IESA

In 2011, India Electronics Semiconductor Association (IESA) forecasted that by 2020 India will consume $400 billion of electronics. At present, nearly 70 percent of it gets imported which is a significant drain on the foreign exchange. This brings us to the need for developing a local manufacturing system and the ecosystem that includes the entire supply chain that goes into electronic manu

Spectrum white open

A cheap broadband solution for the last mile connectivity is lying unutilised with the government, which so far has been reluctant to use. But with several successful pilots underway, ‘white space’ technology can soon emerge as one of the best solutions for cheap broadband connectivity for rural India, something that the national optical fibre network (NOFN) project initiated in 201

Comedy of errors

When the former telecom secretary Rakesh Garg at an event, held in January in New Delhi, mentioned that roughly 4,000 gram panchayats (GP) were connected via optical fibre cable (OFC) under its national optical fibre network (NOFN) programme it did not surprise anybody. In fact, according to the December 2015 data shared by the  telecommunications department, the cable had barely reached 3

A virtual market for farmers

Imagine two onion farmers from Hissar district of Haryana. One goes to sell his produce in a mandi in Delhi and the other in a Haryana mandi. Though they have the same quality and quantity, the farmer who sells onions in Delhi, a different state, earns `5,000 more. How? He was fortunate in getting more options – of better prices or buyers. If the other farmer too had wider options, he too

Startup India: Look who needs an incubator first

It is not very often that government-led programmes actually enthuse the target groups. From that viewpoint, the Startup India event was indeed an applauding success. As chronicled by a multitude of attendees – journalists included – the enthusiasm was contagious. However, as the exuberance settles down, and as the 19-point action plan announced by the prime minister

In search of a tech-savvy farmer

Sunil Kumar Dhanda is an agricultural scientist at krishi vigyan kendra (KVK) in Sadalpur village of Hisar district, Haryana. He helps farmers increase their farm yield by providing valuable information during training programmes held at the block level. To reach out to a larger audience, Dhanda logs on to ministry of agriculture’s web portal – mkisan.gov.in – types out an adv

TRAI backs net neutrality, rejects differential pricing

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on Monday took stand for network neutrality and ruled out any content discrimination on the basis of differential pricing or speed by telecom and internet service provider.  Exercising its power under section 3 of TRAI Act 1997, the regulator has disallowed content discrimination by service providers under the new regulation call

ECM for Digital India

The Digital India initiative talks about creating a digital infrastructure for citizens to enable on-demand services and a connected society at large. The programme’s success largely depends on how well the government can ensure the availability of right information to the right audience (internal and external) at the right time. The key will be to digitise all existing information across

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एक प्रतिशत लोगों के पास देश की 58 प्रतिशत संपत्ति

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